The Appointed Minister Resident in Saudi Arabia (Moose) to the Secretary of State

No. 125

Sir: I have the honor to refer to the Department’s telegram no. 19, May 25, 5 p.m., 1943, and to report that when I called on the Amir Faisal, Saudi Minister of Foreign Affairs, at Taif, on June 5, 1943, [Page 789] the Amir Faisal on his own initiative brought up the problem of securing adequate publicity in the United States for the Arab point of view with regard to the problem of Palestine.

He stated that the Jews in the United States had used their money and position in the United States to justify Zionist claims in the eyes of the American public, to the prejudice of Arab rights. Therefore, the Amir Faisal thought that favorable publicity in the United States would be beneficial in supporting the Arab point of view.

Advantage was taken at this moment of the opportunity to deliver to the Amir Faisal verbally the sense of the Department’s telegram cited above.

Then the Amir Faisal continued by saying that Palestine is a small country: too small to be a National Home for all the Jews, even if the Arabs were to be crowded out. He stated that the Arab population of Palestine had already been afflicted enough by Jewish penetration. Arabs had lost their lands and in some cases had been forced to emigrate from Palestine. To the Amir Faisal, it seemed to be only elementary justice that the Arabs should not be called upon to suffer further Jewish immigration.

He pointed out that the Arab quarrel was essentially with the Zionists and with those who aided and abetted Zionism, and not necessarily with the Jews; recalling at the same time that Jews and Arabs had dwelt peaceably in Palestine, side by side, for many years before the Zionist colonization of the country began.

Later in the conversation, the Amir Faisal revealed that his father, King Ibn Saud, was considering a request for an interview with an Associated Press Correspondent named Clyde Farnsworth, and the King was considering the request solely on the basis of possible favorable publicity in the American press if the interview were granted, or possible adverse comment if it were not granted.

So far as I am aware, the King’s apparent solicitude for American public opinion is a recent development. That he is in fact interested in the attitude of the American public may be inferred from (1) the recent visit of Noel Busch, correspondent of Life, to Riyadh, (2) the King’s desire, or that of Shaikh Yussuf Yassin, to publish the King’s 1938 letter to the President,67 (3) the basis on which the King is considering Mr. Farnsworth’s request for an interview, and possibly (4) the King’s letter to the President dated April 30, 1943, transmitted through the Legation at Cairo which is drawn up in a style which might be considered suitable for eventual wide distribution.

Respectfully yours,

James S. Moose, Jr.